One of the things Covid taught us is that we all have the ability to change, adapt and thrive in new situations which previously we might have thought impossible. For David, this was certainly true!
David (his name has been changed) has severe learning disabilities and autism. Although sometimes his behaviour can be out of character, he is adored by his family and respected by those in our supported living team who work with him. He is set in his ways and, day to day life is better when he has a predictable, daily routine.
Before lockdown he liked to spend weekends with his mum and dad, watching television and walking in local parks. During activities he made little eye contact and getting a smile from David was not a common occurrence. At mealtimes, he wanted all the doors and windows closed and always chose to eat in the dining room.
As for many of us, the first Covid lockdown meant that David's life drastically changed. One member of David's support team had to self-isolate and he couldn't see his mum and dad either. The adaptable team found solutions to make his transition into lockdown life as seamless as possible and one of their first goals was to get consistency back into his life.
They started WhatsApp video calls with his family and found David more stability with a new support team member to replace the team member who was self-isolating. The new team member had a comprehensive induction, working alongside established members of the support team to help him to get embedded into David's precise routines and learned responses.
Slowly, David started to participate in activities. The team discovered that he enjoyed things like threading pasta, so they got him a colourful threading set which he loves! Games like Alien Drop! brought that elusive smile to David's face, but what was most awe inspiring was that David even started eating meals outside in the Summer sunshine!
Change can make us look again at what is important and David showed us that no one is incapable of change.